Long-awaited report says UK chose to join invasion before peaceful options for disarming Saddam had been exhausted
6 July 2016 - Sir John Chilcot has delivered a devastating critique of Tony Blair’s decision to go to war in Iraq in 2003, with his long-awaited report concluding that Britain chose to join the US invasion before “peaceful options for disarmament” had been exhausted.
The head of the Iraq war inquiry said the UK’s decision to attack and occupy a sovereign state for the first time since the second world war was a decision of “utmost gravity”. He described Iraq’s president, Saddam Hussein, as “undoubtedly a brutal dictator” who had repressed his own people and attacked his neighbours.
But Chilcot – whom Gordon Brown asked seven years ago to head an inquiry into the conflict - was withering about Blair’s choice to join the US invasion. Chilcot said: “We have concluded that the UK chose to join the invasion of Iraq before the peaceful options for disarmament had been exhausted. Military action at that time was not a last resort.”
The report suggests that Blair’s self-belief was a major factor in the decision to go to war. In a section headed Lessons, Chilcot writes: “When the potential for military action arises, the government should not commit to a firm political objective before it is clear it can be achieved. Regular reassessment is essential.”
The report also bitterly criticises the way in which Blair made the case for Britain to go to war. It says the notorious dossier presented in September 2002 by Blair to the House of Commons did not support his claim that Iraq had a growing programme of chemical and biological weapons. read more>>>
From the horrors of Isis and Syria to Brexit and the travails of our political parties, we still live every day with the legacy of Tony Blair’s war 13 years ago
6 July 2016 - Strange to recall now, given the disaster that eventually engulfed him, but it was always said of Tony Blair that he was a lucky politician. Lucky in his timing, rising to the Labour leadership at the very moment Britain was ready to embrace almost any alternative to a stale Tory government; lucky in the opponents he faced; lucky that the economic sun shined for his entire 10-year spell in Downing Street, the skies clouding over within weeks of him leaving office. The timing of today’s Chilcot report suggests Blair’s luck has not entirely deserted him.
Think of it. The Chilcot inquiry into the decision-making that led to the Iraq war was set up in 2009 and could have reported at any time in the last seven years. But it will come now, in the midst of the greatest political crisis to affect Britain since 1945. At any other moment, Chilcot would have been the all-consuming subject of national debate for days or even weeks, with Blair on the rack. Now, instead, it will fight for airtime alongside the battles for both the Tory and Labour leaderships and the raging argument about how Britain relates to its European neighbours. Blair’s decisions will be exhumed, his reputation may well be flayed once more. But the focus will not be anywhere near as intense as the former prime minister must once have feared. read more>>>
The Chilcot report did not look at the legality of the war itself. But the former prime minister comes in for heavy criticism for his conduct
6 July 2016 - Sir John Chilcot’s inquiry has not, in his words, “expressed a view on whether military action [in Iraq] was legal”. That question, he said, could be resolved only by a court. Still less does his report deal with the question of whether Tony Blair or others should face legal action.
However, the Chilcot inquiry did find that the circumstances in which the Blair government decided that there was a legal basis for military action were “far from satisfactory”. The report said that Lord Goldsmith, the attorney general, should have been asked to provide written advice to the cabinet on 17 March 2003 explaining the legal basis on which the UK could take military action and setting out the risks of legal challenge.
In fact, Goldsmith started to give ministers an oral explanation, based on a written answer to a parliamentary question which was handed round the cabinet table, and the discussion then moved on. read more>>>
And now Army Sgt. Bowe Bergdahl after the Whole Country Abandoned the Missions and those sent to Accomplish, and still haven't paid for either nor the long term results from and that includes the VA their responsibility, so extremely quickly after 9/11!!
Command Sergeant Major: No Troops Died Searching for Bergdahl
22 December 2014 - The ACLU and Human Rights Watch say the offences amount to ‘a vast criminal conspiracy’ and are ‘shocking and corrosive’ to US democracy and credibility read more>>>
The Royal United Services Institute said the UK could face a bill of nearly £65bn, once the cost of long-term care for injured veterans was factored in, with most of the money was spent on the wars in Iraq and Afghanistan.
The study, called Wars in Peace, said both conflicts were largely “strategic failures” for the UK, The Guardian reported."
"And when you add up to the Department of Defense, Department of State, CIA, Veterans Affairs, interest on debt, the number that strikes me the most about how much we're committed financially to these wars and to our current policies is we have spent $250 billion already just on interest payments on the debt we've incurred for the Iraq and Afghan wars." 26 September 2014
December 22 2014 - American taxpayers have shelled out roughly $1.6 trillion on war spending since 9/11, according to a new report from Congress’ nonpartisan research arm. That’s roughly $337 million a day -- or nearly a quarter million dollars a minute -- every single day for 13 years. read more>>>
Chris Hayes MSNBC: "If you can run a deficit to go to war, you can run a deficit to take care of the people who fought it" In response to Republican opposition to expanding Veterans' benefits on fiscal grounds
Neither of these recent wars have yet been paid for, let alone the results from, including the long ignored or outright denied existence of, till this Administrations Cabinet and Gen Shinseki, only Government branch consistent for the past six years, issues! As well as under deficits most of the, grossly under funded, VA budget is still borrowed thus added, problem creating, costs that shouldn't exist!